Snapchat Claws at Rivals With Worldwide Release of Web Version
The well-known but weakening Snapchat mobile app has now taken a page from Instagram and TikTok by making a web application version of its mobile app available for users worldwide. The company behind the app, Snap, has made this official in a blog post on its website.
Previously, in July, Snapchat for Web was only accessible to Snapchat+ subscribers who lived in the United States, UK, Australia, New Zealand and Canada. Now anyone anywhere can use it.
Users accessing Snapchat for Web can now use it to send Snaps and messages, chat through video or voice calls and access the mobile messaging system of the phone app. This includes reactions and emoticons in chats. There are also 10 filter lenses for video calls on the web version.
All of these features are essentially similar to what Instagram lets users do with its desktop/laptop version. One major difference however is that for both Snapchat Mobile and Snapchat for Web, messages sent between people automatically get deleted after 24 hours.
Snapchat for Web also doesn’t let users capture screenshots, though there are ways of avoiding this by taking photos of a screen and using other technologies.
What’s more, users “Bitmojis” will appear in chats holding a laptop to show others that the user is on the web version of the app instead of the mobile platform. Additionally, the web version comes with an internal privacy screen that hides the presence of the app if a user clicks away to something else on their computer.
Snap wants to bring more of the app’s key features to its worldwide web version but will only later include peripheral functionalities like viewing Stories or Memories.
Users who want to use Snapchat for Web need to visit the web.snapchat.com website and log in with their account. They will then be asked to complete 2FA verification with their phone app. With these things done, users can resume from wherever they left off in the mobile version.
Snap is clearly competing with TikTok and Instagram with these new features and its web platform as a whole. The company has also imitated the dual-camera, timed selfie-photo prompt nonsense of BeReal, which has become surprisingly popular among many social media users. TikTok and Instagram have done the same thing.
One other noteworthy detail about Snap is that while it’s releasing this new competitive technology, the company has also decided to lay off 20% of its workforce in the same month.